A few RCS deaths but Crystal Reds doing fine...
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:30 AM   #1
Dx3Bash
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A few RCS deaths but Crystal Reds doing fine...


I have a 55 gallon shrimp tank with Red Cherry Sakuras and Fire Reds. Currently there are about 100 or so. I also have introduced 60 Crystal Reds to the tank.

The tank was set up (with the intent of it being mainly for Crystal Reds) back in August and was cycled using a fishless cycle. Plants were introduced immediately and have been rather well established for some time now. Plants include Taiwan moss, hygrophila polysperma, crypt wendtii, crypt retrospiralis, ranunculus, glosso, myrio green, and hornwort. My first red cherries were added a month ago once the nitrogen cycle was complete.

The tank specs are low-med lighting with a single 48" Finnex Fugeray. Substrate is ADA Aqua Soil. Filtration is an Aquaclear 70 w/prefilter and a large air driven Sponge Filter. 20-30% water changes weekly using remineralized RO/DI.

Water parameters are:
ph 6.6
kh 0-1
gh 5
TDS 157
Ammonia 0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate less than 5 ppm
phosphates 0 ppm
temp 72

I have had 1-2 dead (sub-adult to adult) red cherries in the tank each morning for the past few days. What confuses me is I have a bunch of little pinhead shrimplets in the tank, that likely came from berried females I purchased. So if the water is good enough for the new shrimplets, why are others dying? The Crystal reds (all juvenile-sub adults) are doing great.

My Red Cherries came from four difference sources, making sure I got different genetics in the tank. I do not know what the water parameters were from the tanks the cherries came from. The last group of cherries was added over 2 weeks ago.

When I set this tank up, my intent was to dial it in for Crystal Reds. With the water parameters listed above, does anyone see these conditions being unsuitable for red cherries? Could it be the softer acidic water that may be source of the issue?

I feel daily and sometimes every other day. I feed Azoo growth, azoo breed, hikari algae wafers, kens meat and algae wafer, and kens veggie pellets with calcium. I have not started feeding fresh veggies yet.

Here I thought if I had any issues it would be with the more sensitive Crystal Reds and not the Red Cherries.

I appreciate any suggestions or theories to what may be causing the Red Cherries to die. Thanks.
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:57 AM   #2
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How have the molts been? Your params are not going to make neos happy but it shouldn't kill them (they likely won't breed in it though). Shrimplets born into params have an easier time adjusting than adults do. My question is you say 'pinhead shrimplets'. Not even hour old shrimplets are the size of a pinhead so I'm wondering if you have shrimplets at all or just fauna or if your idea of 'pinhead' is much different than mine
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:05 PM   #3
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I see a couple molts in the tank every day or two, usually being munched on for an afternoon snack. Wonder if I should slightly raise my gh and my ph(?). Another thought, this tank is heavily planted. Would the ph be dipping even further with the Co2 output from the plants during the night since kh is 0 and there is no buffering? Perhaps if I bumped the kh to 1-2 to buffer the ph. The only issue is, I set this up for the Crystal Reds and they seem to be doing great. So perhaps I should leave well enough alone and allow the younger juvenile cherris to adapt to the water parameters. Thoughts?

They are baby shrimp. Hard to not know the difference. My description of them as pinheads is relative, not literal.
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:09 PM   #4
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I'd pick a species If you set it up for crystals and they are doing great and those are the shrimp you prefer leave it alone. You start messing with the KH the pH is going to increase and you may wind up hurting both species. Were I in your position, I'd leave well enough alone.
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:36 PM   #5
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you seem to be doing everything right/have it down...

How do the bodies look when you find them dead? I agree not to bump up kh
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Old 10-24-2013, 03:37 PM   #6
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neos generally do far better in neutral water. I add crushed coral to my tanks just for them. As forementioned, you may have to pick a species and go with it.
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Old 10-24-2013, 05:38 PM   #7
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The only thing I can think of is possible bacteria infection that only affected rcs. I had my red rili shrimp catch something that knocked most of them out/ culled. My OEBT were absolutely fine. No deaths on the OEBT side. 15% water changes for a week worked to keep the last remaining rili shrimp alive.


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Old 10-24-2013, 08:52 PM   #8
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I appreciate the feedback. I plan to leave it as it is, dialed in for Crystal Reds. Unless I have a mass die-off I won't worry too much more about it.

Thanks everyone.
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